"Be the Change you wish to see in the world" -Gandhi "I will be a Hummingbird, I will do the best that I can." -Wangari Maathai "Where stereotypes begin with a grain of truth, cliches begin with a boulder" - George Watsky "And she's gonna learn, that this life will hit you - hard - in the face - wait for you to get back up just so it can kick you in the stomach, but getting the wind knocked out of you is the only way to remind your lungs, how much they like the taste of air." - Sarah Kay "Do not fear what has blown up. If you must, fear the unexploded." -Suheir Hammad

Childhood

When you were a child you experienced pure ecstasy. From the feeling of flying on a swing set, to the feeling of falling on a slide. The feeling of accomplishment when you completed a puzzle to the feeling of completion when you finished a masterpiece of sidewalk chalk. What all those feelings have in common is the factor of joy.
But somewhere down the line, someone informed us that what we thought was fun, and what gave us joy, really wasn't joy. We were told that the simplicities in life no longer had value and that to have fun we needed to go out, spend money, be loved for who we aren't, and come home and complain about ourselves, until we're reminded of how beautiful and happy we are. "Swings are for children, slides are for babies. Puzzles are for the immature, and sidewalk chalk? Don't even get me started!" was what we heard from someone we deemed as happy. But they were handed down the same tidbit of information once, that crushed their true happiness. It's uncomprehendable why we believed them. Why we went along with them, and threw away something that was going so well, but we did. And ever since we've searched for the happiness we know we're capable of in drugs, alcohol, partying, money spending, lies, and excuses.
Challenge: Go sit on a swing set for a little bit. Sit at the top of a slide. And once you finally remember how to have fun, and build up the courage to let loose, go for it. Those little kid actions inside of you are still there, untouched, and waiting to bring you an uncontrollable amount of happiness again, like when you were a care-free kid.

Childhood

When you were a child you experienced pure ecstasy. From the feeling of flying on a swing set, to the feeling of falling on a slide. The feeling of accomplishment when we complete a puzzle to the feeling of completion when we finish a masterpiece of sidewalk chalk. All these feelings have in common is the common factor of joy.
But somewhere down the line, someone informed us that what we thought was fun, and what gave us joy, really wasn't joy. We were told that the simplicities in life no longer had value and that to have fun we needed to go out, spend money, be loved for who we aren't, and come home and complain about ourselves, until we're reminded of how beautiful and happy we are. "Swings are for children, slides are for babies. Puzzles are for the immature, and sidewalk chalk? Don't even get me started!" was what we heard from someone we deemed as happy. But they were handed down the same tidbit of information once, that crushed their true happiness.
Challenge: Go sit on a swing set for a little bit. Sit at the top of a slide. And once you finally remember how to have fun, let loose. Those little kid actions inside of you are still there, untouched, and waiting to bring you an uncontrollable amount of happiness again, like when you were a care-free kid.

Destiny.

We choose who we want to be. Our path is undefined. All those mistakes that we make, we have no excuse for them. All those good memories are the same case. Sure you can be influenced, but ultimately you are the holder of your destiny. You control your happiness. You control your sorrow. You control your anger. You control your reactions. Other outside sources may hinder your ability to control, but YOU are in control. Don't blame Johnny for breaking your heart. He screwed you over, but you have control on how long you're going to sit around in your pajamas, eating Ben and Jerry's, crying over him, or getting out there and moving on. Don't blame Susie for bringing up a controversial topic. You could just as easily changed the subject.
At the same time, be careful of your actions. Other control their destiny just as much as you control yours, but if you understand how hard it is to overcome outside influences, why would you wish that on anyone? Be careful how your actions will influence others, because they will. Susie brought up that subject, because you commented on something related. Johnny stood you up, because you freaked him out with all the calling. We live in one big circle of actions and consequences.
But just because you now understand that EVERYTHING you do effects someone else, don't act accordingly. Be yourself, but be a good person. Don't hate. Don't discriminate. Don't judge. Don't use violence. Try loving, caring, being compassionate, and patient. Look at how you are being effected by others bad decisions, and look farther down the circle. Are you the true cause? Then you can be the solution.
You control your destiny. You control what happens to you. All through other people. Why would you wish harm on yourself?

"Reduce Bad Thoughts. Recylce Good Ones."

Fear

I'm going to bring in something personal to this post. I try not to use the word "I" but this post will have to be an exception(:

My little sister is fearless. Which is amazing to think about, since she hasn't even hit three yet. She will climb the tallest tree, jump down the longest slide, pet the deadliest snake, and do it all with a smile on her face, and without a trace of doubt in her face. She is courageous. And she has little knowledge of what she's facing, but that doesn't stop her from trying to learn how to tackle the obstacle in front of her.
She does have fears though. The weirdest things. Well at least in my opinion. To her, they are life-threatening objects that could potentially seize the normal life she's grown to accustomed to. The first fear that I saw was the blue glove. The blue glove was a doctor's latex glove. My dad took it out to blow it up, and she quickly recognized the glove as dangerous, and proceeded to run to the door and repeat, "No...No...No...Noooooo...Noo....No". It was quite fascinating to see our pint-sized dare devil be scared of something. We brought a blue glove home with us, and soon she became quite accustomed to it. (after several "random" encounters) She soon was not bothered with the once terribly frightening threat, and continued to live her life.
She is my role model right now because of her innocence, curiosity, and ability to overcome fears so easily. As adults, we tend to ignore our fears, and run when we see them, instead of facing them head on. And they way I see it, our fears, or the ones I'm referring too, are relatively minor in comparison to my sister's fear. Spiders can kill you yes. But the ones that can, are small and rare. How many of you have seen a black widow, and if so, have seen one kill a person. How many of you have seen a harmless spider crawl up your window, from across the room, and scream in panic? But while running for the hills, you still know that the spider is not going to kill you, or most likely harm you in anyway. My sister doesn't understand things like this, but can still overcome a fear of something, she believes to be life-threatening.
If my 2 year old sister can overcome her greatest fear, after facing it head on, can't we as grown humans use the same system to overcome our fears?
By human nature, people will judge one another based on knowledge given prior to the actual first meeting. They will take in all factors of how they met, and start to form a stereotype. This is part of human defense. If you gather information that a person is following you down an alley, you're first meeting will be hostile because you are trying to defend yourself. Emotional protection is also triggered by this same process. If you meet someone at a bar, who appears to be drunk, you don't start falling for them, because you know you don't want to be in a relationship with someone like that. So yes stereotypes are a good thing AT TIMES. But if there is no immediate danger, physically or emotionally, that is evoking you to be in a defense mode, then don't continue to judge the person across from you. Instead, finally get to know them and understand them. Not all people are the same, in fact very few are eerily similar. Because if you have a bad first impression of someone, wouldn't you like to change what you think of them, into something more uplifting? Or would you rather avoid, lie, and pretend around people who you think are horrible, but in reality, are quite the opposite?